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PIA flight operation comes to a halt

KARACHI: After receiving Rs220 million for the supply of fuel to PIA three days back, Pakistan State Oil (PSO) on Sunday stopped further supply, forcing the national flag carrier to bring its flight operation to a standstill.

According to a PIA spokesperson, only four of the 52 international and 29 domestic flights scheduled for Sunday could be operated due to shortage of fuel.

Due to cancellation and delays of flights, hundreds of passengers were stranded in different cities. Moreover, private airliners increased their fares taking undue advantage of the situation.

A source said an stage was being prepared for altogether shutting down of the PIA as its financial situation was leading to such a low that there would be no one interested even to afford buying it. 

PIA has liabilities of Rs743 billion (around $2.5 billion), exceeding its total assets by five times.
The national flag carrier has written to the Aviation Division, requesting an immediate loan of over Rs7 billion from banks. The letter also noted that the government of Pakistan’s guarantee includes the option for the airline to secure a loan of Rs7.5 billion.

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